Smart Farming Practices in Mitigation and Adaptation to Climate Change in Layer Farming31 Jan 2023
January 2023 - Climate change has seriously impacted the agriculture production system, thus influencing our food security level. One of the impacts it carries is on the layer poultry production system, where heat waves followed by unpredictable weather could adversely affect poultry, such as a decline in growth, fertility, and egg production, which could lead to economic loss to the farm. The heat stress that emerges may trigger infectious diseases in the flock, such as Coryza and Colibacillosis, thus threatening poultry health and increasing the mortality of the hens.
Within the next ten years, an increase in global temperature is predicted to occur, enforcing the need for poultry layer farmers to be able to deal with the effects of climate change on their farms. It is anticipated that by 2030, the temperature will increase by 1.5 °C relative to the pre-industrial era. Layer farmers might also witness a catastrophe due to the intense day-and-night temperature variation, which induces egg production and economic loss. Farmers should therefore develop climate adaptation methods to mitigate the negative effects.
Previous studies have shown how poultry layer farmers experienced unpredictable weather and temperature increases, thus adopting some adaptation practices such as using windbreakers to minimize heat exposure inside the henhouse, integration with aquaculture, feed modification, genetic variety, and henhouse modification.
With support from Rabo Foundation, Edufarmers, as a foundation engaged in agriculture, animal husbandry, research, and education, conducted research related to the implementation of smart farming practices in mitigating and adapting to climate change on poultry farms in Blitar.
Based on the report, Edufarmers took the initiative to hold a media gathering and talk show aimed at socializing smart farming practices in mitigating and adapting to climate change, especially for layer farms, as well as inviting speakers from the government sector, universities, and NGOs to dialogue on climate change issues that impact poultry farming from the perspective of each institution.
The media gathering and talk show, held on January 18th, 2023, was attended by around 20 national media, with the theme "Smart Agricultural Practices for Layer Farming for the Realization of an Agricultural Sector that is Resilient to Climate Change."
According to Edufarmers’ COO, Amri Ilmma, mitigating climate change cannot be achieved only with the enthusiasm of one organization, but with the synergy of all parties, especially the media.
"There is a need for capital that is in accordance with the needs in the field to form strong farms so that productivity is maintained. We see that climate change is starting to affect productivity, therefore awareness needs to be seriously considered," said Diva Tanzil, an Impact Finance Consultant of Rabo Foundation.
Prof. Dr. Ir. Nahrowi, M.Sc., Professor of the Faculty of Animal Husbandry at IPB University (Bogor Agricultural University), on the other hand, noted that "Fixing the composition of feed ingredients is critical to dealing with the impact of climate change on poultry farming. We must alter the intake such that it is balanced and emits minimal body heat while being efficient."
This statement was also supported by Iqbal Alim, S.Pt., as the Coordinator of Poultry and Various Livestock of the Indonesian Ministry of Agriculture. "We need to go to the feed source." The distribution of feed needs to be evenly distributed, not only in Java. In relation to climate change, feed production in Indonesia needs to be developed evenly and thoroughly from upstream to downstream. We need to improve agriculture potential, particularly in eastern Indonesia," he said.
According to Ignatius Egan Jonatan, Head of Product at Edufarmers, boosting farmers' awareness of climate change implications should be accomplished through knowledge sharing. "Farmers in Indonesia lack understanding about the effects of climate change and continue to prioritize profit and production. Farmers require a lot of knowledge, and one way to foster it is through climate change adaptation. We have to be able to see from the farm’s perspective how the contribution to green and sustainable farms does not have to be at odds, but rather may go hand in hand. Meanwhile, farmers can deal with climate change by arranging hen houses in such a way that they can utilize as little food as possible with lower costs to produce the same amount of eggs."
Furthermore, the event earlier began with a presentation on Edufarmers' accomplishments and impact throughout 2022.
"More than 500 active students majoring in agriculture and animal husbandry in Indonesia have participated in the Bertani Untuk Negeri program. More than 1,300 farmers from various regions of Indonesia have benefited from this program. Students' hard and soft skills have improved as a result of their participation in the Bertani Untuk Negeri program. Meanwhile, assisted farmers have shown progress in terms of implementing better farming practices, allowing them to have better management, productivity, and income, " concluded Amri Ilmma.
At the end of the event, Edufarmers announced the opening of batch 6 of Bertani Untuk program. Bertani Untuk Negeri (BUN) is a program that aims to put into practice and assist farmers in Indonesia through university students majoring in agriculture and animal husbandry who are at least in their sixth semester. The purpose of Bertani Untuk Negeri is to increase the regeneration of farmers as well as the productivity of agriculture in Indonesia. In this program, students share their knowledge and farmers share their experiences. As a result, students and farmers can create a room for discussion to learn together. Registration for Bertani Untuk Negeri has been open since December 2022, and registration will close on January 27, 2023. For additional information, go to www.edufarmers.org or follow @edufarmers and @bertaniuntuknegeri on Instagram.
Recognizing the many potentials and opportunities in the agritech sector, Edufarmers will hold the Agrinnovation Conference on March 15, 2023. Yos Fahleza Rahmatullah, Edufarmers’ Head of Business and Channel Development, said that the event will present a number of practitioners from government agencies, agritech, venture capital, and the agricultural community. Agrinnovation Conference will be a forum for practitioners in the agriculture and technology ecosystem to discuss issues that have arisen in the industry, successful suggestions for unicorn companies in obtaining investment, and a forum for participants to network. The event is free and accessible to the general public. Please visit https://www.agri-conference.com/ for additional details.
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